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5 speed to 7 speed on friction shifters

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5 speed to 7 speed on friction shifters

Old 10-09-11, 04:14 PM
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5 speed to 7 speed on friction shifters

I'm not sure if I should post this here or in vintage, but here goes:

I'm cobbling up a 1970s vintage Schwinn Varsity as a cheap communter for a friend. Original wheels are shot but I have a pair of 700c rims with a 7-speed freewheel. What I need to know is if the original stem friction shifters on an old Schwinn 10-speed have enough travel to use with a 7-speed freewheel? I have a used Shimano Exage 200 rear derailleur I can use if the 7-speed will work.
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Old 10-09-11, 04:25 PM
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Due to the slightly narrower spacing, a 7-speed freewheel doesn't take up much more width than a 5-speed, so if the current shifters haven't maxed out their travel, you should be fine. Depending on which rear derailleur if any is fitted, that may have enough travel as well.
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Old 10-09-11, 04:30 PM
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My bet is both the shifters and the current rear derailleur will work.
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Old 10-09-11, 05:43 PM
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I bet it will shift fine. Just check the frame spacing. Well... you'll find out, if the wheel doesn't fit in the frame. You might have to cold set it if you can't bend it by hand enough to install the wheel.
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Old 10-09-11, 08:23 PM
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Due to the slightly narrower spacing, a 7-speed freewheel doesn't take up much more width than a 5-speed,
But it does take up some..
1 more cog of extra width,, 6mm, It doesn't take up much more
than a standard 6 speed .
since you would need to spread the rear spacing 3mm, per side
it will be a struggle to do puncture repairs.
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Old 10-09-11, 11:22 PM
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I've heard that the stock Schwinn levers have barely enough travel for the stock 5 speed. My old Varsity never could hit all 5 speeds.
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